AWD #018: What ECOs Do
What ECOs Do
Summary: Milkshake and Dash get into a disagreement about what ECOs do.
Date: 24/01/2012 (OOC Date)
Related Logs: None
Nico Ygraine Zachary Rozzen 
Observation Deck
The Obs Deck is one of the more quiet areas on the Orion where people can come to get away from the hustle and bustle that goes with of the rest of duty on the ship. The front of the room is a very large armored glass window to allow a dominating view of whatever is out ahead of the battlestar. Seats rise up at even levels, plush chairs and couches provided for the crew to relax in. During Condition One an armored plate is lowered down to cover the view and prevent the room from becoming a hazard and seal tight.
AWD #18

Nico is seated relatively close to the glass. He's close enough to touch it, though he's not bothering with that. Certainly close enough to see his own reflection, which is in the path of his vision. He's got an empty plate on his lap, and a tall glass of water at his side. The man's eyes are narrowed slightly, and his brow is creased a little.

And in comes Ygraine. Blonde, freckled, hair in braids, she's got some earbuds in her ears and a rolled up glossy mag under her arm, and she's half humming some bit of pop music under her breath.

Nico reaches for his water, and spots the blonde's reflection in the glass as she walks by, "Catchy." is all he has to say about the tune. He has another sip of water and peers at her. "I've heard that before. A long time ago." Even if the song came out a month ago, he's going to think it came out years ago, at this point.

Ygraine lifts a brow. "Longer than six months?" she asks, tugging the buds out of her ears. "You the pickup from Picon?" she asks curiously.

"Is that all? Feels like an eternity." Nico swallows his water and can't help but chuckle a little, "Yeah. One of 'em, anyway. Didn't know I was the scuttlebutt of the ship. Guess it would figure. right? Lieutenant Nicodemus Gallo, Colonial Navy, service number 657-16-7877." He reaches for his dogtag and then repeats himself, as if he'd just been taken prisoner and the only thing he was going to give was name, rank, and serial number." He smiles to himself and adds, "You'll have to beat the rest out of me."

"That won't be too hard. I could probably knock you down with my pinky before sitting on you. "Ensign Ygraine Vashti, Colonial Navy and I ain't gonna bother with my service number. Is that how ya normally talk to girls?" She moves to take a seat, bending a long leg at the knee and bracing her heel against the edge of it.

"Sure. Chicks really dig service numbers." He looks dead serious for a second, and then smiles a bit, loosening up. "Yeah. I'm the Picon guy. Or one of them. I'm a Raptor and Predator ECO. Picon sucks, we're holding on as best we can but it's a losing fight, and I probably don't know anyone you're looking for, but you can ask."

"Don't really know anyone from Picon, but thanks anyway." Yggy says. "If you were from Leonis, that'd be useful. And are there any other kind of ECOs?" she grins at him.

Zachary arrives from the Fore Corridor.

"Ones that only do Raptors or Predators, I guess. I don't know." Nico shrugs and has another pull of his water, "What, you're from Leonis? Man. I'm rusty as frak." He switches to Leonese, "Born there, my mother there buried. Was to leaving six, when I was." Yes. Very rusty. He goes back to standard, "I got nothing but bad news, though. I hear Leonis isn't exactly what it used to be. But then, no where is."

Ygraine smiles faintly at the old patter. It's clear she understands it, but keeps speaking in Colonial Standard. "It's occupied. My mother and brothers are still there, and I'm hoping they're still alive. Our farm was pretty rural, and my brothers know how to live off the land."

Slipping into the observation deck, Zachary glances up as he hears voices. "Milkshake." he offers to Ygraine and fishes out a small packet from his bag to toss over. "Blondies - fresh this morning, thought I'd save you a couple."

"Yeah." Nico's face darkens. "Occupied. That's the part that always worries me. Not the nukes, not the fighting, not the sneak attack or the question of whatever the hell happened to our defenses. It's that they do totally human shit like prison camps. Like they programmed themselves to be spiteful little toaster ovens or something." To Zachary, he nods respectfully, "Sir."

Ygraine lets out a cheerful sound as she catches the bag and opens it up, taking out a baked good and cramming a bite into her mouth. "Mmmm. Mmmm." Her eyes flutter upward and she leans to one side, making blissed out sounds. Milkshake is out of commission right now, but she'll be right back after these brief messages.

It takes Zachary a moment to remember the newcomer. "Nico, right?" he asks, an arch of a brow. "Last I saw you you were flat on your back on a stretcher and we were loading you up to unass Picon. You feeling well enough to consider heading back?" And with that, he leans against the glass and looks down towards the planet.

"Yes, sir." Nico has another sip of water, "Never been better." A lie which becomes evident when he involuntarily winces when he turns his body a little too much to look at the Major. "That may be an exaggeration, sir. I am editing the truth. For victory." And then he sighs to rub his eyes, "Lieutenant Colonel Petra wasn't too sure if I should go back. My squadron's short on birds and long on pilots. They'll kill some off soon enough, though."

In from the corridor strides Moira, her blues still buttoned up tight and a notebook folded against her chest. There's an air of distraction in the way the Intel Officer's eyes run about the room, quickly finding the broad window and the view beyond. She's not all stiff posture; a hand is lifted up to rub at the tension in her neck as she moves forward to where the other's stand. It's Petra's name that seems to catch her attention and send dark eyes flickering over towards Nico.

"Marcus said that, huh?" Zachary says. Very few people refer to the TACCO by his first name, but the CAG is one of the few that can and does. "I wish he'd tell me when he's bolstering my ranks." And with that, he offers his hand. "Since I didn't get to introduce myself down on Picon, I'll do it now. Major Zachary Sheperd, Pro Temp Commander, Carrier Group 11. Welcome to JTF Nomad, son." he offers. "Most of my pilots call me Pie."

Ygraine finally manages to stop chewing and swallowing. "He thinks ECOs are for something other than Raps and Preds." she informs Zachary, adding to Nico, "Also, you shouldn't bullshit with the whole 'you're fine' thing. I mean, it's pretty obvious you're not, and the only thing dissembling will get you is a lack of baked goods." Tattletale.

Nico shakes Zachary's hand, "Major." He pauses when Zachary makes it official. "Shit." It's like someone threw a knife at his forehead. He glances out the window at Picon. "Shit. That's… I'm really not sure how I feel about that, sir. Idea's been on my mind since he put it in there. Lot of good people down there I'm leaving behind." He sighs, then sips his water, "I used to go by Butterfly. Now it's Dash. There's a dumb story there, but there's always a dumb story." He rolls his eyes at Ygraine and smiles thinly. Then he opens his mouth to say something, stops, and admits, "Nah. I got nothing."

Rozzen's flickered interest lingers as the CAG introduces himself. Dark eyes shift from one man to the other and then finally out to the planet beyond the reinforced window. But when they come back, it's to glance over towards Ygraine. "How's that?" she wonders of the other woman with the smallest inflection of curiosity. "What ECOs are for," is clarified a beat later.

"Sis, you are a terrible tattletale. I shouldn't make you any snacks for a month. Be glad you might be family." Zachary teases Ygraine as he hears the woman speak up behind them, and interested eyes turn to the woman. "…hello." he offers to Rozzen with a smile.

"How's that what?" as Ygraine. She wags her half-eaten blondie at Nico. No, you cannot have it. "That's a good rule. Never argue with Milkshake." She crams more food in her mouth, and makes an inquiring noise at Rozzen. She is a girl who is not afraid to eat heartily.

Nico can't help but smile at Ygraine when she taunts with her blondie, "Yeah. I'm starting to get a sense for that rule." Rozzen's question draws a confused look from him, as well.

"What makes you think he thinks that," Moira phrases differently. A suggestion of a smile touches at her lips as she watches Ygraine's blondie waving and cramming. From there she slants a look towards Zachary and his smile. "Hello. Major." Her own expression firms a fraction more towards pleasantness. "Captain Moira Rozzen," she introduces herself, shifting her notebook in order to offer a hand.

"Nice to meet you, Captain." Zachary offers, accepting the hand and giving it a shake, before he glances towards Ygraine. "I think you're scaring away all of the ECOs to want to be pilots instead. Stop that." it's said in a teasing lit as he distracts himself for a moment then fingersnaps. "Well, even if you were planning to go back to Picon, it will be a while yet. TACCO gave me different orders. I'll have them ready soon." And that tone brokers what he means. There will be combat soon.

"Oh. Because he said so?" Yggy replies faintly questioningly to Moira, before noting to Zachary, "Because it's a jerk move. Without the ECOs, the pilots would be easier for the toasters to hit. Too many ECOs are forgetting that."

"It's just confusing. I was expected to die down there. Now I've got no idea where I'm going to die. But that's not the worst thing there is." Nico shrugs to himself. When Rozzen introduces herself, he nods, "Sir. Lieutenant Nicodemus Gallo. Nah, Ygraine. You've got it all wrong. ECOs? We are the eyes, ears, and outstretched middle fingers of the colonial navy."

Rozzen returns her arm to a loose sling over her notebook. She rocks back a step so she can better keep everyone in view. Her lips press thin a moment at Ygraine's initial reply, but soon she's back to tilting vague curiosity. This time, as the ECOs go on, the traces of her smile show in a crinkle at the corners of her eyes. "I was with you there at the beginning, Lieutenant," she notes to Nico's assessment in a dry tone that's not entirely without humor.

Zachary just gives Nico a look. "Well, aren't you just a ball of sunshine and kittens." he says to the ECO with a shake of his head and glances out the window. "And I thought that Zander was the fatalist of the group."

Ygraine for her part stares at Nico. "Oh, back the frak up." she says, lifting a finger. "You've done been on this boat for five minutes, and you maybe have a total of two years at best on me, Lieutenant, and you think you can sit there and tell me I'm wrong about what ECOs are? I suggest that you actually listen to what I said about what people think, which which is a separate business from what I think, because you sure as hell ain't gonna score with girls with listening skills like that, and you damn well will get yourself killed with listening skills like that. I don't care if you are gimped out, and I don't care which colon they yanked you off of, you better check yourself before you wreck yourself." She snorts then, to Zachary. "Bunk him with Buttons. Keep all the emo in one concentrated place."

Nico shrugs to Zachary, "Sorry, sir. It's basically how we roll down there. Just doing our job until we check out. I-" Ygraine's outburst makes him widen his eyes, "Oh…kay. Sure. ECOs are whatever you want them to be, Ensign. We make pilots harder to hit and we're not the eyes, ears, and outstretched middle fingers of the colonial navy afterall." He gives the woman a confused look, but doesn't seem to mind or much care about this either way." He sips his water.

Rozzen drops back to neutral as she turns to listen to Ygraine. Considering eyes rove over the other woman. In the end, she remains silent, tilting a look back towards Zachary with a slight twitch of brow.

Raising his brow at Rozzen, Zachary tilts his head. "..is something wrong?" he asks the Captain, as he lets Nico and Ygraine argue it out. It's just the way it is these days amongst the pilots. As long as they don't start throwing punches, it's fine.

"Not once did I suggest they were mutually exclusive. That was all you." Ygraine points out, and shrugs. "Whatever. You're cute, so I'll chalk the dumbassery up to the boatload of painkillers they've more than like got you on."

Nico casts a confused glance at Rozzen, then shrugs at Ygraine, "Right. That's fine." He scratches the back of his head and has another sip of water, then slowly rises to his feet.

A lopsided curl settles onto Rozzen's lips. "I can think of a few things," she notes blandly in reply to Zachary. But while she has his attention, and the ECOs aren't throwing punches, she'll also lift her chin into a little shake to separate one thought from the next. "You were on Picon," is only half a question. Surely she should know this? Nico draws a flick of her eyes, perhaps just in the motion of standing, but primarily she's watching the Major. "How well do you think they can hold out?" She adds further explanation, in a murmur, "my parents were down there."

Any thought that Zachary had to finding an amused ending to the Nico and Ygraine argument is lost as Rozzen asks the question that he gets the most these days. His lips lose their gorgeous little smile and draw into a thin line. He doesn't hold back on the punches either. "A month. Maybe two. Enough time for us to evacuate as many people as we can in one big push before it falls." he says quietly, looking into Rozzen's eyes. "Your parents stand a better chance there than anyone on Tauron did, however." he says, eyes haunted by the visions of the glassed planet.

"Or Sagittaron." Ygraine murmurs. Nico's retreat is regarded blithely, and she turns her attention to Rozzen and Zachary.

Nico slows down, listens to Zachary, and nods his head, "Captain, the soldiers on Picon are committed to getting as many people off of Picon as possible, but without serious help, there's a limited window of opportunity. It's all about timing. They need to go."

Rozzen nods slightly while holding the Major's gaze. A breath that might have fueled another question lifts in her chest, but her lips roll closed with his final comment and before any words can escape. Brown eyes scan blue a moment, as if in search of those ghostly vision, before turning to find Ygraine for similar study. From there she slants a look out the window again while she listens to Nico. "So many limits," she comments with her own murmur.

"That's how war goes." Zachary says as he pushes away from the window. "If you do not mind, I need to go grab some chow and start working on battle orders." he admits quietly. "Good evening, everyone."

"Major." Ygraine mutters under her breath. When Rozzen looks at her, Ygraine looks right back, all freckles and big blue eyes. "Evening, Pie." she says placidly. She considers her magazine, having been abandoned in these recent moments until now.

Nico slips out to the hall, just shaking his head.

"Good evening," Rozzen adds her echo to the quiet farewells. It's not until the men have gone to leave that she looks away from the window to notice Ygraine and her magazine. Without interrupting, the woman shifts further down the row of seats in order to sink into one and lapse into the restful silence of stargazing.

"You like the view of Piraeus?" Yggy asks Rozzen conversationally. She seems to be deciding whether to stay or go, at least for the moment.

Rozzen rolls her head into a turn broad enough to verify that the other two have left them. Her expression is a little more amicably relaxed as her gaze settles upon Yggy. "Well enough," she supposes. "I'm rather inclined towards things a little further out of reach, but there's something to be said for a sunrise from planetary orbit." She shifts in her chair to more comfortably continue without such a crick in her neck. "You're a Raptor ECO?"

"Yep." she says, leaning forward to extend her hand. "Ygraine Vashti. Ensign, ECO. You can call me Milkshake if you want. There's good hunting down there."

"Milkshake?" Her brow may lift, but a warmer smile touches her lips as Rozzen reaches to take the other woman's hand. "I'll take your word for it," she says of hunting. "Hunting doesn't exactly seem in short supply these days." She's more matter-of-fact than melancholy. "Have you," a catch of her lip puts slight pause in her question, "gone up against them yet?"

"I know, I know - the automatic assumption is that I danced on tables or did a striptease, but it's not anything that salacious; I was born an raised on a dairy farm on Leonis." Ygraine explains with a grin, at least until she's asked that question. Then her gaze turns more solemn, but by no means depressed or dark. "I was in a raptor over Caprica on War Day, sir." she offers.

"Ah," Rozzen sees with a long nod, her smile stretching briefly wider in a more subdued mirror of Yggy's grin. As for the later fact, that earns a shorter nod. "It seems likely we'll have more days like that ahead," is an absent, obvious sort of statement. "And I have trouble understanding how anyone can't see the value in what you do," she hearkens back to the ECO's earlier words. "I mean, when you're pitting human reflex and reaction against machine…" Her shoulders lift a fraction. "How do you not want some good tricks up your sleeve?"

Ygraine shrugs. "When you look at any ship, you see who's sitting in the front, not who's sitting in the back." Ygraine says. "And in the heat of the moment, when things are going crazy and a raptor pulls some viper out of a spot of trouble, it's the pilot who tends to get thanked. But most are quick to remember later. And it's…really more a matter of being able to assess and execute and keep your eye on the prize, you know?" Yggy beams at Rozzen.

"It's funny, the filters we put on," Rozzen muses to Ygraine's point of looking to the front. "But that's good, that they remember. Most of them." Her eyebrows twitch, lips quirking a deeper curl as she echoes the ECO's qualifier. "And I may have some idea," as well as a spark of camaraderie in the light of the younger woman's beam. A roll of her wrist starts a stretch that pulls her arm out along the seat's back before dropping to reclaim the notebook that had fallen to her lap. "Speaking of, I've a few more things I wanted to finish up tonight." And so she shifts towards the edge of her seat with a final look to the window, drinking in the view to save in memory for the more confined hours ahead.

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